Financial Performance

Workday Tops Q3 Estimates But Stock Dips 1.9%

CFO Robynne Sisco cautioned that the Scout RFP acquisition and new products launching next year would have a delayed impact on its results.
Matthew HellerDecember 4, 2019

Workday beat quarterly earnings estimates but its stock price dipped after its CFO dashed hopes it will get an immediate boost from its push into financial software.

The enterprise software company said third-quarter revenue rose 26% to $938.1 million as subscription services revenue jumped nearly 28% to $798.5 million. Analysts had expected overall revenue of $920.1 million and subscription revenue of $785 million.

Workday’s adjusted earnings improved 71% to 53 cents a share, topping estimates of 37 cents per share. It has now beaten earnings estimates for 13 quarters in a row.

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“We executed well in the third quarter and delivered strong results, with subscription revenue growth of 28% and non-GAAP operating margin of 15%,” CFO Robynne Sisco said in a news release.

For the current quarter ending in January, Workday forecast subscription revenue of $829 million at the midpoint of its guidance, edging by estimates of $827 million.

“While players like [’s] Amazon Web Services and [Microsoft’s] Azure still dominate the broader cloud market, Workday’s core Human Capital Management Software (HCM) benefited from enterprises transitioning to the cloud for managing their payroll and human resources,” Reuters said.

The company has also been expanding into financial software, announcing last month an agreement to acquire online procurement platform Scout RFP for $540 million.

But Workday’s shares dropped 1.9% to $170.21 in extended trading Tuesday after Sisco indicated that Scout RFP and new products launching next year would have a delayed impact on its results.

“Given the timing of these launches and the time it takes a new product to impact subscription revenue growth at our scale, these emerging products won’t start to have any notable impact on our revenue growth until fiscal 2022 and beyond,” Sisco told analysts in an earnings call.

She added that Scout RFP would shave 1.5 percentage points off the adjusted operating margin in 2021, while adding less than 1% to subscription revenue.

Workday’s net loss narrowed to $115.7 million, or 51 cents per share, in the third quarter from $153.3 million, or 70 cents per share, a year earlier.

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